MORTARR TAKES GREENBUILD
BY: JEN LEVISEN, EDITOR AT THE FORUM, MORTARR
November 22, 2020
NOVEMBER 22, 2019 // 5 PM
GREENBUILD CLOSING VIDEO
NOVEMBER 22, 2019 // 10 AM
SHAW SHOWCASES SUSTAINABILITY EFFORTS AT GREENBUILD
For the third year in a row, Shaw Industries Group, Inc. (Shaw) hosted an Education Lab as part of the annual USGBC Greenbuild conference and expo in addition to showcasing a test installation of an innovative new trade show carpet product and highlighting the sustainability focuses of the company’s Patcraft, Shaw Contract and Shaw Floors Builder Group brands.
Shaw offered five CEU-credit approved education sessions in its Education Lab. The sold-out sessions provided fresh thinking and continuing education opportunities for approximately 500 attendees. Featured speakers included subject matter experts from The International WELL™ Building Institute, Health Care Without Harm, Purpose Built Communities, Enterprise Community Partners, Veneklasen Associates, Greystar, Center for Active Design and the University of Georgia’s New Materials Institute in addition to Shaw.
Echoing the U.S. Green Building Council’s commitment to sustainable and resilient communities and cities, Shaw’s participation in Greenbuild centered on highlighting best practices and lessons learned in specific sectors -including affordable housing, health care, multifamily and residential housing.
“The spaces where we learn, create, and come together to solve our greatest challenges have a significant impact on wellbeing,” says Susan Farris, Vice President Sustainability and Corporate Communications, Shaw Industries. “That’s why at Shaw we’re keenly focused on the ingredients that go into our products and the impacts of sound, moisture and other design elements on people in addition to global challenges like climate change and ocean plastics.”
The conference provided an opportunity for various Shaw brands to showcase their sustainability efforts, including:
Shaw Contract debuting its 2 Degrees Sustainability Journal
Patcraft releasing its sustainability themed Idea Book
Healthy Home market insights from the Shaw Floors team
Shaw Specialty Markets unveiling its innovative, new trade show carpet
“We are proud to be a part of Greenbuild again,” Farris continued. “At Shaw, we work closely with a large network of partners and organizations to help us continue to take the next step forward, across every element of our sustainability strategy to support the wellbeing of people and the planet.”
NOVEMBER 21, 2019 // 3 PM
Today, President Barack Obama kicked-off the 2019 Greenbuild International Conference and Expo – the world’s largest convening of leaders in sustainability – at the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta, Georgia. President Obama joined Mehesh Ramanujam, President and CEO of the U.S. Green Building Council, for an hour-long moderated conversation about sustainability in the built environment, the direct link between climate change and global economic inequality, and the importance of leadership in shaping a sustainable agenda.
After being asked what he believes to be the “most compelling issue in the world today,” President Obama responded by citing that two “directly connected” issues top his list – “climate change” and “global economic inequality.” He went on to say, “The reason I say those two things are connected is that it is hard to figure out how we solve sustainability issues and deal with climate change if you also have huge gaps in wealth and opportunity and education... Because what happens — and we’re seeing this around the globe — is that as wealth gets more and more concentrated and more and more energy is used up by the few, the many become resentful and it undermines our sense of politics and a sense of community. It is hard for us then to mobilize the body politic around taking collective action.”
NOVEMBER 21, 2019 // 11 AM
U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) just announced that more than 100 cities and communities have now achieved LEED certification, and Atlanta, this year’s Greenbuild host city, marked the 100th certification.
USGBC launched LEED for Cities and Communities in 2016 as a globally consistent framework for measuring and tracking sustainability at the city and community scale. The rating system tracks progress across key performance indicators, including energy, waste, water, transportation, resilience, health and equity. Atlanta’s Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms and USGBC’s President and CEO Mahesh Ramanujam announced the city’s certification and work during the conference’s Wednesday keynote.
“We have been envisioning a new way forward for the growth of resilient, green, inclusive and smart cities and communities and believe that by focusing on performance we can better understand how our decisions impact the planet and our quality of life,” said Mahesh Ramanujam, president and CEO, USGBC. “Celebrating this milestone with the City of Atlanta here at Greenbuild is a tremendous honor. Atlanta’s work is an inspiration and shows how sustainability can be a tool for addressing some of the challenges residents are facing, while also helping to reduce carbon, energy and waste, and conserve water. Atlanta and the more than 100 other LEED-certified cities and communities help open the door for new businesses and stimulates a robust green, economy.”
Atlanta’s Resilience Strategy was a central tenant contributing to its certification and builds on both the challenges and opportunities the city faces. By making resilience a key part of its sustainability strategy, the city is focused on efforts that support residents and address some of the region’s more pressing issues. Initiatives include the Atlanta Resilience Equity and Design Collective (RED Lab) partnership with Georgia Tech to help residents use data and technology to solve community issues that contribute to or detract from the livability of their neighborhoods. The EV Rideshare Program provides transportation services to those with low mobility access, including previously incarcerated individuals. Additionally, the city’s Clean Energy Plan is intended to move Atlanta to 100 percent clean energy by prioritizing equity and affordable clean energy options. The city has also made impressive strides in reducing energy consumption in buildings through the Atlanta Better Buildings Challenge and reached its 2020 goal of 20 percent reduction ahead of schedule.
The LEED for Cities and Communities rating system is a roadmap for helping leaders measure their impact, improve sustainability and develop plans for green energy, water, waste, transportation and other factors contributing to quality of life. LEED cities and communities are laboratories of innovation and help demonstrate how sustainability can also be a tool for social problem solving. Today, the more than 100 LEED-certified cities and communities represent more than 46 million people around the world.
NOVEMBER 21, 2019 // 10 AM
After announcing the city achieved LEED Silver certification, Atlanta is further strengthening its commitment to sustainability by once again by playing host to the Greenbuild International Conference and Expo at the LEED Gold Georgia World Congress Center.
The world’s largest event dedicated to green building features four days of networking, educational sessions and green building tours, as well as daily keynote addresses delivered by visionary leaders including President Barack Obama, Jeanne Gang, architect, Dr. Bernice King, renowned civil rights and peace advocate, Jamie Margolin, teen climate change activist, and Dr. Marshall Shepherd, a leading international expert in weather and climate among other speakers.
Known for showcasing the latest trends and technologies shaping the development of green buildings, cities, and communities, the international event brings professionals in architecture, construction, engineering, planning, and interior design who depend on thoughtful and ethical solutions which promote wellness and resiliency in construction and urban development to downtown Atlanta.
In the Expo Hall, attendees will be joined by 300 exhibitors from across the green building sector who will be showcasing leading products and technology for the sustainable building industry. Focused on the latest topics and trends, attendees will find exhibitors who specialize in building performance, human health & wellness, smart energy and more, including the Mindful Materials Pavilion – an area dedicated to deepening the conversation around materials transparency and product certifications. With a microgrid powering a portion of the show floor using solar panels and a tiny sustainable home on display, the Expo Hall will be a destination for engaging activities and discussions, as well as additional education sessions.
“As a rising star in the green building revolution, Atlanta is the perfect backdrop for this year’s Greenbuild Conference, and we are proud to showcase the amazing strides the local community has made to better the quality of life for its residents,” said Sherida Sessa, Greenbuild brand director. “Greenbuild attendees will not only be able to discuss the impact of connecting people, community and built spaces in creating a truly sustainable future, but they can experience a tangible representation of this vision firsthand by simply stepping outside the Expo Hall and seeing some of the city’s model green buildings.”
Greenbuild will feature dozens of other events, workshops, and summits over the four days. These include a speaker spotlight event with Jasmine Crowe, the Atlanta-based founder of Goodr, as well as a Resilience Summit, Global Health & Wellness Summit, Women in Green Power Luncheon, Leadership Awards Ceremony, a Corporate Sustainability Forum, and the Greenbuild Celebration event featuring Collective Soul on Thursday, Nov. 21, at the LEED Platinum Mercedes-Benz Stadium.
In addition, attendees can view Atlanta’s most sustainable sights first-hand through several guided tours including one which will give them a look at green sports in Atlanta through exclusive tours of the Mercedes-Benz Stadium, the first pro-sports stadium in the U.S. to achieve LEED Platinum Certification, as well as SunTrust Park, the home of the Atlanta Braves, and the Atlanta Hawks’ State Farm Arena.
The conference is also dedicated to leaving a meaningful impact on its host city and features several initiatives aimed at improving the lives of local Atlantans, such as a robust scholarship program and the Greenbuild 2019 Legacy Project-a $12,500 grant, awarded to Hagar Civilization Missionary, Inc. (Hagar CTM). The nonprofit affordable housing developer and property owner of the English Avenue project located in Atlanta’s Westside English Avenue.
“The Greenbuild experience is an opportunity to bring leaders together to share and explore new ways sustainable design, construction, and operations can improve our quality of life,” said Kim Heavner, vice president of conferences and events at USGBC. “At this year’s conference, attendees, exhibitors and speakers will play an important role in shaping the future of green buildings, cities, and communities.”
Additionally, as part of Greenbuild’s commitment to sustainability, the conference will be powered 100 percent by renewable energy and aims to achieve a waste diversion rate of more than 85 percent. To offset attendee’s personal carbon footprints while at the conference, attendees were asked to contribute funds to the Kariba REDD+ Project, an initiative dedicated to the protection of close to 785,000 hectares of Zimbabwe land from deforestation and land
degradation. This act of land preservation has resulted in the prevention of more than 18 million tons of carbon dioxide emissions from being released into the atmosphere.
The conference was previously hosted in Atlanta in 2005.
NOVEMBER 20, 2019 // 4 PM
NOVEMBER 19, 2019 // 5 PM